Keeping a clean house is literally a full time job, hence why services exist to clean our homes. Cleaning is a dirty job. Yes, such an oxymoron. All the elbow grease and oomph you put into keeping a clean home. From the laundry to the dishes, vacuuming to the dusting, scrubbing and mopping. I do my best in our house to keep each room clean as we go about each day, while this is idealistic with three kids, we give it the old college try. As I mentioned in my DIY Softscrub and Ajax post, my kitchen is the most beloved room in my house. Nirvana, a sense of zen and peace wash over me while in my kitchen, so I go to great lengths to keep it clean. Bathrooms, however, are at the top of my least favorite room in the house, yet the second most important to keep clean. So I needed a DIY all purpose cleaner and spray that could cut through grease and shit…pardon the pun.
I tried a lot of “green” and non-toxic cleaners. I was left feeling completely dissatisfied with the cleanliness and I still felt as if I needed to wear marigolds due to the chemicals. I hate marigolds, I am allergic to latex so they really get in the way of progress, but they are the strongest against the harsh chemicals of “green” and “non-toxic” cleaners that don’t list their ingredients and still smell harsh.
I did the next best thing when considering cleaners, I considered what naturally occurs that is an excellent germ fighter and cleaner. No harsh fumes, toxins and or chemicals that can harm your skin or body.
Plain. Good, old fashioned vinegar. I love vinegar. Crazy as it may sound but we used vinegar for everything when I was growing up. Like the Windex from My Big Fat Greek Wedding, yes, we used vinegar for bug bites, baking, cooking, cleaning, odors, my mother always had vinegar.
So I took the grand opportunity to make an awesome DIY all purpose spray and cleaner. I use this on all my cutting boards, on my counters, in my microwave, on my glass cook top, on and around my toilets, in the bathtubs, in the cars; you name it this mixture has tackled everything! Just the other day I went to drive my van and realized in the back seat one of my kids had spilled some sort of icing or sugary gunk from a birthday party they had attended. When the party was is beyond my memory at this point but the electric blue the was cemented on the seat was a dead giveaway the event took place months ago. Using my mixture I sprayed the seats and VOILA! The stain and the built up gunk were gone.
Recycling my old spray bottles from the former cleaners in my home I took the liberty to make my mixture and then pour right into these recycled bottles. You can even pick up some really fantastic stainless steel bottles as well from any dollar store. I love the metal spray bottles for using with my citrus essential oils since the citrus can corrode the plastic.
Using a custard dish with about a tablespoon of salt, the essential oil of my choice which all depends on your mood and or your room. Some excellent choices are:
- Thieves: Great all around use and for cleaning the entire house
- Purification: Great also for kitchens and bathrooms
- Rosemary: Absolutely divine for in the bathroom.
- Lemongrass: Great for all around the house and a zesty citrus smell without feeling overbearing.
- Eucalyptus: Always fresh and excellent for the kitchen or bath.
As a go to choice I love Thieves, with the mixture of cinnamon, clove, rosemary, eucalyptus and lemon (pretty much covers everything above) the scent in my home is warm, a bit spicy and totally fresh. I just drop the oils in the salt, mix well so the salt absorbs the oil. Pour into water, mix with the vinegar, pour into your spray bottle and you have an easy, delicious smelling all purpose cleaner for your home.
Here are the materials you will need to get going:
- spray bottle
- glass measuring cup
- Favorite essential oils
- OPTIONAL: For extra grease cutting power you can add 1 TBSP Dr Bronners Castille soap
As mentioned above, I use salt to help disburse the oils in the water and vinegar. So for 2 parts water to 1 part vinegar. Depending on your spray bottle size you can use 2 cups of water, one cup of vinegar with your oils.
Pour into your spray bottle and get going on your cleaning. I love to use this when I am in the kitchen, I can clean my cutting board even with food right on the counter and I am not concerned about chemicals or the spray getting in anyone’s eyes, skin, food, harming the dog. The mixture is completely toxin free, cuts through my sweet potato stains from chopping on my cutting board, cleans my cutting boards after each use as well as disinfecting, leaves my bathrooms fresh and my house nice and clean. What toxin free cleaners do you make in you home? Do you use a similar variation and or what do you like to use in your home?